Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Khurda, Dec 8:
Odisha’s Khurdha range Forest department officials today recovered bodies of more than 20 peacocks, a crow and a heron from Madhupur forest of the district.
The reason of the death is yet to be ascertained and the carcasses have been sent to OUAT (Odisha University of Agriculture and Technology) for postmortem. Forest department officials from Chandaka and Khurda range are on the spot to carry out a field investigation.
“As per information received from locals last evening, we visited the spot this morning and found the bodies of the birds lying scattered in an area spread over four to five hundred meters. Even though we are not sure about the time of death, it appears that they died a day or two back. We are taking the issue seriously and an investigation is on to find out the details,” said a Khurda Ranger Dillip Kumar Rout who was present on the spot.
As per information provided by Rout, a joint team of Chandaka and Khurda range officials are scanning the forest to see if there have any other deaths of other birds or animals inside the forest. He, however, ruled out the poisoning angle.
“Local farmers have already harvested their crops. I don’t think that the birds have been poisoned. The bodies have been sent to OUAT for postmortem and the report would reveal the exact reason of death. From the circumstantial evidence, I think it is some kind of disease caused by bacteria. We are awaiting the report from OUAT and would take necessary steps accordingly,” he added.
As per locals, about four to five hundred peacocks live in that forest and this kind of an incident is unprecedented in that area. Many peacocks were seen roaming around the carcasses this morning which might result in further spread of the disease, if there is any contagious one.
Besides, the Forest department officials also appeared to be utterly ill prepared to handle this kind of a situation and were seen touching the bodies with bare hands, which might affect the humans in case of a flu.